Do We Just Blindly Trust Unai Emery?

The “Opinion” Connundrum

We had a fantastic discussion yesterday on the question of Unai and Granit Xhaka related to how fans feel about them. FGG and I went back and forth, many others chipped in and in the end it seems there’s a fairly broad spectrum of opinion. Obviously that’s what a blog is for and on this particular site, almost always discussion and differences of opinion are respectful. So it seems discussion wise we’re on the right track. So what about the subjects of our discussion? Some of the points raised in the discussion were along the lines of:

“Should we be criticizing our own players/manager?”

“At what point is it disloyal as fans to criticize our players/manager?”

“Do we back them through thick and thin, even if we see an issue with their performance?”

All of which are legitimate questions. It got me thinking, when was the last time I felt like being critical of our players/manager (before Sunday !!)? I came up with during the last 2 years of Arsene’s reign when I got to the point of despair with his blind belief in his players’ ethic which it seemed obvious to most everyone else, was severely lacking. Anyone who watched Adams, Bould, Vieira, Parlour, Freddie, Santi but to name a few will know what I’m talking about.

I got to the point where I just couldn’t trust AW anymore because I believed he was too close to the technicalities of his management to see the more simple picture, which was – play your best players who will do the job you tell them to, no matter what their name or “status”. Also find a Captain that will lead by example and demand those players do what they need to. I think most people would agree that this was in fact the case and the reason he had to go.

So here’s the question: Do we just blindly trust Unai and not take our players to task. I think everyone would say no to that so where is the line? At what point is it ok to question, criticize, hold accountable? Obviously I’ve reached my tipping point with Xhaka and yet, although Unai keeps picking him, I am not there yet with the manager. It will probably take a while for that but I feel it’s ok to question him at this point.

I know we’re just fans and we don’t have all the technical information, nor see the players in training every day so is there a point that allows us to voice our opinion if it’s not necessarily positive or even downright negative. I’ll not be a hypocrite here and admit I had a few choice words for people who have criticized Wenger, Fizman, the Kroenke’s over the years because I always thought there was more to the picture. So what do you all think? Are there rules for this or do we just have to agree that we all see it differently?

Mike M




47 Responses to Do We Just Blindly Trust Unai Emery?

  1. RC78 says:

    Dumbeldore said – good friends stand up to their friends when needed. I think that good fans can question the choices of the club and the coach without being disloyal and disrespectful. The point is that if we go to constant booing, shaming, name calling… It may be a step too far.

    Emery was Psg coach and I can tell you the team didn’t improve under him. Some players may have improved slightly but in reality and until today, we are still at the same level as we were with Blanc or maybe worse. Emery and the sports directing team are doing a good job at changing the team profile in terms of the type of players we are getting – we re getting more physically robust players and maybe slightly meaner players too and it seems we re ready to give a good shot at our young players.

    I think the fam base is just tired of players like Mustafi, Xhaka, El Neny because they epitomize the defensive frailties of the latter Wenger years and they have not really improved since Emery came. There is no more tolerance for a poor performance from them, the cup is full.

    So, i don’t expect us to be title challengers until Emery leaves and don’t expect us to improve dramatically but I think at the end of 2021, the team will be in a good spot to consistently challenge for top 4 and cups. In 2021-2022, we may start the season with Torreira, Guendouzi, Willock as our midfield and they would have had 2 more seasons under their belt and that makes me smile.

    Patience is key. Don’t expect huge improvement quickly but slow and steady gradual improvements that will see us become a solid top 4 contender rather than a top 4 hopeful

  2. fatgingergooner says:

    I would imagine that as Arsenal fans we all want the same thing, which is for the club to be successful, but I guess we all have different views about how that could and should be done. Where I get frustrated (without wanting to repeat my comments from yesterday) is when people throw around rumours and murmurings like they are facts just because it backs up their argument. It also annoys me when people fail to see both sides of an argument and just push on with their point instead of acknowledging that actually, there may be some truth in both sides. I think these issues go way beyond football and are a general problem in our society. People seem to have forgotten how to be wrong, and can no longer accept that there is nothing bad about being wrong from time to time. I guess that because there is so much information around, people feel they are clued up and know everything, but the truth is we only see and hear what other people tell us, and when you have so much fake news and information out there it’s very difficult to find the facts. With that in mind, I personally believe that we all have a right to criticise and question the players and the manager if we feel they are doing something wrong, but when I see ‘fans’ getting pleasure out of one of our own players/managers failings, then at that stage I lose interest, because it’s then become more about hating that player/manager than it has about supporting your club. You should always want every player to succeed because at the end of the day their success or failure is ultimately Arsenal’s success or failure. The way Wenger was treated towards the end was a disgrace and the same happened with Gervinho and is happening with Mustafi and may repeat itself with Xhaka.

    Moaning after a bad performance is one thing, wanting a bad performance so you can moan and say ‘I told you so’ is something entirely different.

  3. LBG says:

    Thanks Mike
    Spot on RC.
    Happy Birthday, Tom Watson 70. A true sportsman in every single sense of the word, in a sport where there is no hiding.

  4. fatgingergooner says:


    I agree with a lot of what you say and I would just add that aswell as patience being key, our recruitment in the next 2 years is going to be vital. It wasn’t that long ago that we were sat saying the same things about Ox, Ramsey and Wilshere as we are saying now about Willock, Geundouzi and Nelson. We all know how that turned out! We need a bit of luck of course, but I think our main failing of those three young players was that we never recruited well around them. The team balance was always wrong and the quality of the senior players just wasn’t good enough. If we are to avoid that mistake again then we must really look to invest in 2 or 3 star players in the next year or 2 and pray that they work out far better than Özil and Sanchez did. With Auba and Laca here, now is the time to strike and if we can get too 4 and CL football then there is no reason why we can’t go out and buy a world class CB and fare I say it, a world class HM player to finally get some balance in the side and compliment these young players so that they can go out and flourish without the whole weight of the club being in their shoulders, as it was with Wilshere and co.

  5. LBG says:

    Ginger and RC
    Between you, we have a perfect prescription, IMO, for the future. In the meantime, bring on our smiles, Dick.

  6. gee says:

    Good post, dont agree with some of it though.

    When Wenger came to England he was under big scrutiny, from the press (anyone remember the Arsene who headlines), from our fans, opposition fans thought he looked like a teacher (he dropped wright and sold Merson in Wengers 2nd season), from his peers (remember Alex Ferguson was questioning the hire as foreign managers were not that successful in England, Vialli, Gullit etc).

    The fact is he won the fans over with players he brought in, Viera, Petit, Anelka, Overmars. He won our and opposition fans over by the football he played, he was classy and respectful to press all ways giving interviews, and he was successful in acheiving what he acheived.

    Fact is Wenger and Grapham acheived in their 1st couple season a dn earned their good will. So far emery has not.

    unai has failed in everything he said that he was going to put right and in some cases has made some areas of our team worse. I am fed up of seeing comments that are giving this guy credit for doing very little.

    He sold Carzola who is doing well in spain, got rid of Ramsey and isolated Ozil. He is overly cautios and negative.

    Note we have been quite strong at home games over the last few seasons, we didnt have much of a problem defensively, in fact we had one of the better records at home in the league over the last 2 seasons and we certainly did not have an issue with our attack at home in the last 2 seasons, in fact from what i can remember only the top 2\3 had better home records.

    Have a look at some of unai team selection @ Emirates

    The line up for the world beating record breaking Hudderfield @ home last year

    Leno: Bellerín, Mustafi, Sokratis, Lichtsteiner; Torreira, Xhaka; Guendozi, Kolašinac, Aubameyang. Lacazette.

    Note 2 attacking players. 9 defensive minded players

    Line up against UK most dangerous teams and one of the most dangerous in Europe Crystal palace @ home.

    Someone claimed he was too defensive meeting big opposition LMAO

    Arsenal: Leno (6), Koscielny (6), Mustafi (3), Mavropanos (6), Jenkinson (5) Guendouzi (6), Elneny (6), Kolasinac (6), Ozil (6), Aubameyang (7), Lacazette (6)

    Note 3 attacking players – emery was being adventurous that day. 8 defensive minded players

    Line up against Spuds on Sat had 3 attacking players the rest were defensive minded players.

    Why is he been given credit for this?

    (sorry for long post – bored at work)

  7. fatgingergooner says:


    Where have you seen him get credit? I can’t say I’ve seen anyone giving him praise over his team selections. I think if anything it’s been the opposite! Maybe people have defended his team selections in the face of the criticism but I don’t think you can call that praise! 😂

    I think the Palace example is a little unfair as we had no Ramsey who would surely have started, and no Bellerin either who I would definitely describe as an attacking full back. Also, you have to take into account that this season we’ve signed 3 attack minded players in Ceballos, Pepe, Martinelli, aswell as promoting Nelson and Willock who are attack minded players. I think from the signings that it’s pretty clear that Emery does see the whole picture and he knows the 2 areas of weakness last year were attacking midfield (which was dreadful!), and defence. It will be interesting to see wether it’s Emerys tactics stifling our attacking midfielders or wether Özil, Iwobi and Mkhy just weren’t up to scratch, as it was poor last year and we’ve changed a lot ready for this season. The fact Ramsey flourished maybe hints towards the individuals being the problem and not Emery’s tactics, but we shall see.

    Having said that, i agree with you in that we should play a more attacking team. Our attacking players are our best ones so I’d rather see them on the pitch in place of the extra security at the back and hope we can out-score the opposition. There is no point playing the extra defensive players if they are only going to do some of the stupid things we’ve seen in the last 2 weeks anyway! Good teams are usually balanced teams though, and at the moment we haven’t got that. I think the midfield needs a lot of work and I’d like to see the younger players played in the hope that they can be the answer as it seems Xhaka isn’t. I also think that we will improve drastically once our full backs are fully fit. AMN isn’t a RB regardless of how well he’s done, and Kolasinac isn’t quite the answer on the left either. Full backs are very important in today’s game and even more so in a back 4, so hopefully they come back quickly.

    I guess so much can only be done in one window and it’s fair to say that Emery inherited a poorly balanced and poor quality squad for the most part. Other than the attackers, the rest needed work and it seems AM and defence were the chosen areas for this window. Hopefully midfield and CB are next.

    One area Emery has improved us though is against the bigger teams. Our record last season was better than it had been in quite a while, so maybe the cautious approach does have a place in those matches.

  8. Gooner4life says:

    Last season failure grasped from the jaws of success. Move on
    3 matches into season 2 with encouraging signs from players who play for the badgewing real and new players with promise, an upgraded technical team that will develop ongoing strategies ,academy players showing real potential to challenge for consistent inclusion and the return to fitness of key defensive personnel This is not the time to start an Emery out campaign BUT there are issues evolving that will need to be addressed with the team selection and structure ( evidence of which has been shown by. clearing £1million from our weekly wage bill and realising £48 million from sales ) and using whatever legitimate avenues of approach to bend Emery’s ear and hopefully his will (or at least the rationale for his decisions )
    We are all anxious that the failings of last season are not repeated but cannot blindly demand and expect success because of tradition but should believe that our squad are equally energised to fight for every point and contest

  9. RA says:

    A very neatly put Post, Mike, thank you.


    — Is it OK to criticise your team or individuals within the team or the club?

    — Is it OK to express an opinion about the same things/people mentioned above?

    — Are there some reactions which are beyond the pale?


    — 1(a) where ‘criticise’ a verb used to form a judgement of someone or something, and express that view, then that is human nature, and none of us can suppress that.

    — 2(b) An opinion, as has been said oft times before, is a judgement of someone or something not necessarily based on fact, but expressed in a way that acknowledges the writer concerned knows it may be wrong, then that is ok too.

    — 3(c) the problem here is that ‘criticise’ and ‘opinion’ can be conflated and to the reader can sometimes cause an angry reaction, so it is useful, until bloggers get to know each other to occasionally acknowledge whether you feel ‘criticise’ is an opt choice or not.

    Things it would be advisable not to do,

    Personalising a response to another blogger, in a vitriolic way, makes the conversation unhelpful and pointless.

    Boo-ing the team or individual players is a no-no to any real fan.

    Probably best to reserve your opinions or criticism to other Arsenal (AA) fans, as that is OK — venting your feelings about your team to other fans. from competing clubs, is really poor.

    Bit rushed — so does not fully add anything to the debate. C’est la vie. 😳

  10. gee says:

    fatgingergooner says:
    September 4, 2019 at 10:54 am – Thanks for replying mate and keeping respectful.

    some examples of free credit.

    People giving him credit for playing youths when all or most of them youths had their debut under Wenger

    – Gary Nevillie was saying emery did a good job against Liverpool despite getting hammered because we showed more passion!!

    I have seen comments saying emery has made us more organised and we are more tactically flexible, like i said credit for very little – i see no improvement in defence

    The Palace example i followed up with 2more home games that to me show a pattern of negativity @ home. We did not have a problem winning matches at home so why the negativity?

    “he knows the 2 areas of weakness last year were attacking midfield (which was dreadful!)”
    The areas we are weak in and have been for a while is defence, i see no improvement at all in fact he made the attack and midfield worse with his tinkering and man management.

    ” fact Ramsey flourished maybe hints towards the individuals being the problem and not Emery’s tactics, but we shall see.” –
    Was he not the guy who dropped both Ramsey and Ozil? (1 apparently can not play away from home despite 4 season playing away for Arsenal and the other did not fit his plans until results dictated that both player had to be included)

    Tactical fluidity has been mentioned but if you have to make drastic half time changes, would it not indicate that you have not setup properly in the 1st place?

    “Emery inherited a poorly balanced and poor quality squad for the most part. ” – Really you mean the squad where he sold Carzola, Ramsey Isolated Ozil. The youths that he is getting so much praise for playing now were all available last season but he chose not to play Willock who made his debut almost 3yrs ago, gave Nelson and Smith-Rowe on loan to champoions lg teams and Europa lg teams!!

    Like i said i can see a lot wrong with this guy but other are singing his praises for very little. 2 giant managers in Wenger and Grapham acheived in their first 2 seasons. his 1st season was pants so has to do well in this one.

    “One area Emery has improved us though is against the bigger teams” – Very debateable – i will have to research but in my eyes i dont see this.

  11. gee says:


    ” fact Ramsey flourished maybe hints towards the individuals being the problem and not Emery’s tactics, but we shall see.” –

    Ramsey openly stated he wanted to be captain and was looking forward to working with new manager. He went from that in pre-season to signing for Juve by January
    Strangely we have had problems with Ozil from the moment emery arrived.

    Last season we were crying out for width, instead of seeing what Nelson and Rowe might provide, he shipped them out. Now gets praise for getting in wingers and wanting to play with width.

    He signed and played Lichstiner @ RB, when he could have played youths, used Elneny although he did use Mustafi.

    I am questioning some of his decision now after seeing him make odd questionable decisions last season that he is getting praise for.

  12. Pat7 says:

    I’m reading slagging UE when he may not be to blame.
    He did not sell Ramsey, Raul did. Gazidis & Wenger overpaid Ozil & Mkhi and a player that was more injured than not demanded too much…..
    Cazorla was sold as he was extremely unlikely to make it and probably wouldn’t in our league with the bashing he’d get…..
    Raul wanted youth not more older players yet UE is now being blamed for not buying Delph for £8M.
    UE can only suggest and can be overruled, he is coach only and will be replaced if he does not meet expectations.
    He’s not a great communicator, he’s not pretty, he’s lots of things but let’s give him a chance rather than scapegoat him for everything while Raul gets all the plaudits.

  13. Rasp says:

    Well said Pat … I agree

  14. GoonerB says:

    Thanks Mike. It’s fine to have differing opinions and criticisms as long as it remains respectful and non vitriolic both between bloggers and the fans at the ground. Those are the only rules I would suggest Mike.

    Emery has made some much needed changes to us after the long Wenger era. I think the last few AW seasons we were playing football from a bygone era and had failed to keep up with other sides in many areas. Emery has somewhat modernised us in certain areas of our game so has been important in that sense and we needed a manager that was able to do this at this point.

    The question I asked yesterday though was whether Emery was a stepping stone manager, that temporary troubleshooter, or whether there was an elite manager waiting to break through as the team develops.

    Make no doubts we are searching for our next elite manager but is this Emery? As can be seen at other clubs elite managers don’t necessarily just fall into your lap at the first time of asking. Just look at Utd’s struggles post Ferguson and how long has it taken for Liverpool to find the right one in Klopp?

    As Utd have shown even getting in experienced managers doesn’t guarantee anything, and when a club strikes lucky and happens upon their next great manager it could just as easily be someone from nowhere with a limited managerial C.V instead of someone with a great C.V till that point.

    Emery should have our full support from start to end of season, but there should also be expectations. If he falls short of those expectations then the club should deal with it in a dignified wayand start thinking about who can take us on further.

    Everyones expectations will be different. I think we are still 1-2 key players short of really being up there but what we have now is far better and more balanced than we have had in many years. I look at the league situation and see a 2 horse race for the title. Then I see us in the next mini league up against Utd, Spuds, and Chavs. I feel we can top that mini league but should expect to be in the top 2 of that 4 horse race.

    My second expectation is that we look far closer and more competitive in head to head games with the leagues 2 stand out teams, even if we fall just short of winning those games at present. I felt he got it really wrong against Liverpool and we were blown away. We were never properly in that game. Any manager can get an individual game plan wrong at times but the elite ones rarely do it often.

    Those are games where my expectation, as the season progresses, is that even if we are still losing them towards the end of this season, I want to see the game go to the wire with the opposition having been seriously troubled by us.

    Even if Emery doesn’t turn out to be our next elite manager he will have brought us something important in the way he has reset our psychology as a team, and somewhat modernised us. I would like to think that Emery’s journey to us was preparing him to take a leap forward with us and start to move into the bracket of the Klopp’s and Guardiola’s and that he is that man we need permanently rather than temporarily.

    I read RC’s comments with interest though, who has watched far more of Emery’s teams (before coming to us) than most of the rest of us. My feeling is that RC feels he is that temporary stepping stone, unless I have misread that, and that we will fairly soon need someone else to progress us further. If someone were to ask me directly then my gut instinct would say the same at present, but it is far too early to say or sure until we see more of the season unfold.

  15. fatgingergooner says:


    I get the impression you are not a fan of Emery 😂

    I’m not going to respond to your points in detail as I don’t have that level of patience 😂 but on first read it does feel like some of the things aimed at Emery are not necessarily his fault. All I know is that Wenger’s last season was so much of a shambles that I never expected us to finish higher than 6th last year and I certainly didn’t expect a EL Final. The squads age profile and ability is far more promising now than it was under Wenger (regardless of who gave debuts, UE is the one playing the youngsters) and we look like a team that actually cares again, which we certainly didn’t under Wenger. If you look for negatives in this squad, you will still find plenty, but there is also a lot of good stuff going on and I actually enjoy watching this side whereas I certainly didn’t at the end of Wengers reign.

  16. Pat7 says:

    Agreed GoonerB. UE is not good enough as a communicator and that counts! Freddie has been promoted for that and settling in the youth recruits and may be a stopgap manager of the future while waiting for the next one to show himself.
    Personally I was disappointed we missed out on Klopp and Pochettino while dithering on AW…..

  17. fatgingergooner says:


    There is a certain Massimiliano Allegri currently taking a break from football, and I wonder if his availability will be something the club look at come the end of this season. I guess a lot will depend on how well we do, and how willing Allegri is to come to England and be a coach rather than a manager.

  18. gee says:

    fatgingergooner – I get the impression you are not a fan of Emery 😂

    Mate I was happy when emery was appointed and thought he would do well and still might but the points i have brought up to me highlight big massive areas of concern.

    The title of the post is Do We Just Blindly Trust Unai Emery?

    I think i have provided enough points to show that some people do and also our 2 previous most succesful managers had to earn that trust by being succesful.
    I know its early but the signs are for me emery is not bringing sucess and improving us in the areas he said he was going to improve us. We score less goals and concede more but some how this is seen as progress!

    Fair enough the last 2 season of Wengers were def not as good as the preceding 18\19 yrs – but emrys first is not as good as both Wenger and Graham. I cant remember what the initial feeling was when Graham took over but Wenger faced more scrutiny that emry has.

    Pat7 – so did raul or emery push for denis suarez? Did emery or raul decide against Moreal being sold last yr?
    I get he is a coach but he has to work with the playing staff so has a big imput in that area.

  19. fatgingergooner says:


    It’s interesting that you say Wenger and Graham had to earn their trust, yet you don’t seem overly keen to give Emery the same opportunity. Graham and Wenger did similar things to UE in their first season in that they discarded some of the older players and signed younger models, and I don’t think either of them won the league in their first season, so is Emery doing that much worse?

    I’m not a fan of comparing modern situations to previous era’s as too much has changed in the game, but I’m not sure Emery’s first season was any more or less of a success than Graham’s and/or Wengers.

  20. Rasp says:

    Good points FGG. The financial landscape of football has changed dramatically since Graham and Wenger started at Arsenal. It was much more of a level playing field.

    The Invincibles were extraordinary and they may have been able to compete against the super rich clubs of today – but would we even have been able to afford to buy or to hold on to such great players. I’d think a George Graham approach in today’s game would get us no higher than mid table – but it worked in that era so full respect to him.

  21. gee says:

    “It’s interesting that you say Wenger and Graham had to earn their trust, yet you don’t seem overly keen to give Emery the same opportunity.”

    Graham won the league cup in 1st season. Wenger improved our football and the calibre of player in his 1st yr. We signed Viera 1st yr and played amazing football, won the double next yr. This is how they earned the trust by being succesful or showing they were building to those successes.

    Like i said for me under emery we seemed to have regressed. Okay we finished 5th instead of 6th the season before but we play less attractive attacking football, we leak more goals, and i cant say that i am more excited watching this team field 8 defensive minded players at home to Crystal Palace and Hudderfield.

    Anyways thanks for engaging – i think we will agree to dis-agree.

    Jury is out for me for emery, i have my doubts for the resons stated, dont get me wrong if he would have won the Europa then for me he would have earned a lot of good will but he didnt and we looked like dog shite. I refuse to give plaudits for what i see as non acheivements and he needs to deliver this season.

  22. GoonerB says:

    FGG should it transpire that Emery is not the one in the end then Allegri should obviously be seriously considered. He will probably be high on many fans wish list, and he was near the top of my wish list prior to Emery’s announcement. However he isn’t my absolute preference.

    Really Allegri should be a no brainer but each club and league probably has a slightly different requirement to be that perfect fit. A foreign manager who has experienced success in another league doesn’t automatically translate that they will be successful in the EPL.

    The Italian managers have been a slightly mixed bag in the EPL. Factors such as communication and language barriers and the style of football you are regularly up against can come into play. What type of manager are they? Do they develop players? Do they promote from within or are they demanding huge transfer outlay to develop the team and will throw their toys out of the pram should we not comply fully?

    I also come back to what I was saying about Utd. They struggled with the likes of Van Gaal and Mourinho who should have been more nailed on successes. I still feel we can be brave in our next (if needed) appointment, and take a chance on an untapped gem rather than a been there, seen it, done it manager. If after 2 years it hasn’t worked, then look again.

    My choice would still be Arteta with Freddie still as the number 2. For me it potentially has a mouthwatering feel to it. Some young managers have shown that you can step in at a high level appointment and be a success. The only thing against Arteta is 1st team manager experience. Everything else he ticks nicely for me and even trumps other experienced mangers, like Allegri, in some of those factors.

    He has a strong association with the La Masia academy, is really EPL experienced and fluent in English. He knows Arsenal and has been under AW and now been the right hand man to arguably the worlds premier coach. He is touted as being a great tactician that even Guardiola will defer to.

    Lots of plusses. I would hate to miss out on a real gem or the next great thing and really feel we should take the gamble.

  23. Mike M says:

    Morning all. Thanks for the responses. I think the variation of opinions illustrate the point. FGG says he doesn’t like people wanting to be right and hoping the team fail so they can prove their point, Also fitting their narrative to situations to try to prove non-provable points. I think that’s probably the best summation of it. For example:
    Welcome Gee (not sure I’ve seen you on here before – apologies if you have). Gee obviously isn’t a fan of Unai. RC78 says we can’t win the PL with him. Others of us think he;s doing ok but are willing to question him. I’m certain there are others who think he’s great. I’d imagine FGG’s point is, let’s just say we win the league next season with Unai. Is Gee going to be upset? Is RC78 going to have egg on his face? I think not. I believe all Gooners will rejoice together. For starters, there will need to be improvements that we all agree will have to take place for that to happen. Which will vindicate, Gee, RC78 and any of us that are expressing concerns. This is always a moving target. Most thoughtful analysis of Arsenal by true fans will have some substance to it. So let the discussion continue and let’s all celebrate the victories – hopefully there will be many.

  24. gee says:

    @ Mike M Thanks for the welcome Mike and good post like i said earlier.

    Mate i will come on every blog i have exressed my opinion and state i was wrong and happy we won the league because at the end of the day i want our club to be successful and i am big man enough to admit when he is wrong.No one can be right all the time anyway.

    For me the reason i feel like this is partly to do with emery and what i see as not much progression being made and the good will and credit he seems to be getting for doing liitle. The credit he is getting is making it seem to me like he is doing a good job, when for me this is not the case. Like i said i would love to proved wrong though the seaon but emery too has to show that he can make those improvements.

    I keep highlighting the line ups @ home to Crystal Palace and Huddesfield to emphasise the overly negative philosphy. The question for me is will this philosophy bring us success in the long term and i feel like it wont.

  25. fred1266 says:

    Hey RC78 I have another question for you
    In Paris how do u travel around, I know in London u have the oyster card, does Paris have the same,

    Thanks in advance

  26. Jim Lloyd says:

    So if you decide you do’t trust Emery… Do you honestly believe that it will make one iota of difference??.. Of course it won’t..everyone has an opinion, but none of those opinions will change anything that happens at AFC…

  27. Mike M says:

    Gee – Glad you’re on. My point is, you’re probably not “wrong”. I think you bring up legitimate points and in order for us to win anything significant, we still have a long way to go and many changes to make. So in the end, I think most of us agree we’re on a path and the real discussion is how we get to where we want to be. Generally it isn’t as simple as right or wrong. There’s a bit of everything that’s probably needed.

  28. Pat7 says:

    Gee – good points and yes, not all is fine. From his perspective when under the cosh he would naturally turn to people he has experience of rather than trust in others new to him – that is where Freddie’s input is invaluable. This season will show, maybe even this winter, whether Emery is the right man; all I’m saying is don’t put all the blame on his shoulders.
    Your input is great and knowledgable so very welcome! – maybe a post in the future? 🙂

  29. Pat7 says:

    I’m still excited! As our 3 come back in, successfully I hope, maybe we upgrade at CD/HM in January, maybe release Ozil &Mustafi at this point……all those kids gaining experience upping the energy, pace and power….WOW COYG! 🙂 🙂

  30. RA says:


    In your Post you finished with the question’

    — “Are there rules for this [criticism] or do we just have to agree that we all see it differently?

    I tried to answer your pertinent question by defining what criticism is, and ditto as regards opinions, and suggested what may be acceptable and what is not.

    Well, as an answer to the latter part of your sentence: – “do we just have to agree that we all see it differently?”

    There is a clear example of fans seeing things differently right here in the responses to your Post.

    I answered the ‘conundrum’ as you called it, as in para: 3 above, yet everyone else just went straight in and confessed to criticising someone or other going back to the dim and distant past of George Graham and Wenger, up to and including currently criticising Embers — and to hell with any ‘rules’.

    There’s your answer — sod the rules! 😜 And enjoy yourselves. 🥺

  31. fatgingergooner says:

    Gee made a point about us losing the EL final and therefore UE not building any goodwill on the back of the defeat, but I find that really hard to accept. I know that in football it’s all about winning the trophies, but does that mean that all those wins to get to a Cup Final are worthless if you don’t win it? I can’t get on board with that. The way we navigated the EL last season whilst still maintaining a very strong top 4 fight was surprising to me and should be worthy of praise, at least within the club. I suppose it mirrors the question of last week when we discussed the success of a tactical set up if the team ultimately loses the match.

    Back to Emery himself, I think that it’s too early to see how he is going to push the squad on this season. We’ve only played 4 games, 2 against good sides, and the season start is usually a time when fitness is being gained and the playing squad are all at different levels, making it difficult to play the first XI. Hopefully we will get more of an idea about how Emery is wanting to set up after the international break. I do however share a worry with Gee in that I struggle to see a situation where Emery would play a really attacking line up. He likes control of tempo and I imagine the game on Sunday would’ve frustrated him as it was really open and end to end. I’m not sure I will ever see Emery playing 1 midfielder behind Ceballos and Özil, with Pepe, Laca and Auba up top. It would certainly get the fans excited but how successful it would be I’m not so sure.

  32. gee says:

    Jim Lloyd says: “So if you decide you do’t trust Emery… Do you honestly believe that it will make one iota of difference??.. Of course it won’t..everyone has an opinion, but none of those opinions will change anything that happens at AFC…”

    Mate the question was asked at the start of the post “do we just blindly trust emery” and i answered.

    I dont really care if emery hears it or not and you are stating the obvious.


  33. gee says:

    @ Pat7 – Thanks Pat, glad we can share thoughts without it turning into a name calling hate fest.

    I am only good at ranting and only rant when i think things arent going to plan. In general i read comments more than make them.

  34. gee says:

    “Gee made a point about us losing the EL final and therefore UE not building any goodwill on the back of the defeat, but I find that really hard to accept. ”

    Hey FGG i didnt explain myself fully. At the start of the season i was glad we chose emery over Arteta cause i thought emery was more proven and experienced. I was looking forward with Willock, Nelson, Smith -rowe all getting a chance to kick on, I was looking forward to more defensive stability but an upgrade on our defensive shape without the ball, i was looking forward with him working with Ramsey, Ozil, Iwobi, ANM etc.

    we went on a unbeaten run and then the Ramsey and Ozil issues happened whilst we were on that run. I noticed our football got progressively worse over the course of the season, I noticed him outing players in public (Ozil cant play away, Ramsey doesnt fit), I noticed the way we capitulated when we were actually favourites at one time for 4th spot and all of this culminated in that abject performance in the final that i felt if he had won, everything he did that annoyed preceeding that would be forgiven. Unfortunately he didnt and left me doubting the guy.

    3 games into the new season after having a year to sort the defence getting new players and getting some sort of structure, philosophy instilled in the team, I dont see improvements sorry.
    We rely more on the brilliance of lacazette and aubayang and that is unsustainable over a long season.

    It not just because he lost th EL, this has been building up and he can make it all better by being succesful.

    If he is successful know one is going to remember his early struggles and the rubbish football – that includes me but if i cant bear to watch my team beacuse it is not entertaining and they lose why would i not hold him responsible?

  35. Mike M says:

    Gee – again you make valid points. Here’s how I look at it. I think it was very difficult to replace AW. It would have been gutsy to just blow up everything AW and stamp your mark and I think he chose to do it less aggressively. We’re all aware that the wage/contract situation was a shambles and I really think he would have kept Ramsey if he could have but he was a little financially hamstrung. I think you’re exactly right, he became overly cautious towards the end of the season. But I think it’s also good to look at it as a longer term project. I’m not sure if I really believe it but I’m almost relieved we’re not in the C/L this season because we’re not ready. As much as I’m fed up with him picking Xhaka I also hear what FGG and others say about not isolating him because we need a little depth. So hopefully in the longer term, Emery might show you more of what you’re looking for.

  36. fred1266 says:

  37. kelsey says:

    I won’t get a reply or probably agreement but in fairnest Emery inherited a total mess left by Wenger,Gazidis and Laws but if we don’t get top 4 this season he will go.I am in two minds about his team selection sometimes and if the expectations of Arsenal(Kroenke) and it’s fans are too much for him is yet to be seen, and I know we have Holding,Tierney and Bellerin to come back and remember the type of injury Holding and Bellerin are the worst kind and can come back and ruin a career.
    I read today that Schalke 04 wanted Kolsaniac in the last few days of the window, and he wants to go back to Germany as his wife won’t return to London since the attack so I expect him to leave in January and Josh has promised more funds.
    I am undecided on Emery though it’s early days Raul and Edu are vital to any real improvement.Raul did a brilliant loan deal with Roma re Mikkitarian and these guys will show some steel not seen for a while..

  38. AKINZO says:

    I have followed with keen interest the argument put forward by Fatgingergooner and Gee and must confess its being quite fascinating.
    Certainly, we all crave the success for our dear Arsenal and have differing opinions on how it’s achieved. However, I’d like to state that there’s no clearcut path to success in any human endeavour.
    Gee, apparantly hasnt seen anything to convince him that UE is the right man to take us to El Dorado. Whatever we say here has little or no impact on what decision would be taken to move the club forward, but as faithful, who sleep and wake Arsenal we can voice our opinions to vent out our frustrations.
    I’d like to ask a few questions: did Liverpool play fantastic football that was the envy of others in the first two years of Klopp reign? Were there doubts about Pep ending up at City a failure because he could only lead them to 3rd place finish in the EPL and failing to win any trophy in his first season?
    Yet, the German won the CL last season while the Spaniard came up with an unprecedented domestic trio.
    Reflecting on his performance in that first season, the much acclaimed Pep, described it as a disaster. Today, while still unsuccesful in the quest to win the CL for the club, he is already in the folklore as the club’s most successful manager. While inheriting a largely successful side he still oversaw a total and expensive defensive clearout, to mould the team into his vision, that today is reverred in the EPL.
    I have seen so much shortcomings in the tactical nous of UE to conclude that he is another journeyman. He was lampooned and lambasted by many as being the architect of our defeat against Liverpool but mates, if any of our frontmen had taken the glit-edged chances we created on the counter in that game, very few of any would castigated him for his approach believe me.
    I found it funny that many who had criticised Wenger for going toe to toe with better teams, not willing to play to the strength of the opponents are now claiming that Emery was naive not to go gung-ho with Liverpool who have turned Anfield into a true fortress! Even Barcelona were hammered at that arena!
    It was heart rendering watching us lose to Crystal Palace last season at the Emirates but we shouldnt forget so soon that many of our first choice players were unavailable and there was an all important EL game a few days later. The manager had to make a decision and hence coming up with the squad of that day.
    The current Arsenal team is work in progress and if they are still short of our expectations, there is no doubt about the potentials herein in the squad. The team with time will reach the dizzying heights we craved but we need to be a bit more patien and supportive.
    Already, on some blogs, Pepe has been described as an expensive version of Gervinho but is this true? Even having to come from a probably lesser league, the lad has shown in the few matches he has appeared, that he could be a true star.
    UE, has his flaws if truly he is good coach, he will find a way round them. He perseveres with Xhaka, a player that we all see as the chink in our armour but am sure he will deal accordingly with him as he has the likes of Ozil and Mustafi soonest.

  39. fatgingergooner says:


    Not much to disagree with there. I think a lot of the things we enjoyed over the summer in terms of transfers were probably very little to do with Emery, so on that front we looked to have really improved regardless of who is coach. I agree that Emery needs top 4 this season and tbh, I would be shocked if he didn’t get it. This squad is 3rd or 4th best in the PL and it’s been a while since I’ve genuinely thought that. United look a real work in progress with no cover for Rashford and Martial and with a shaky back line, and Chelsea have just lost the player who was keeping them anywhere near the top and look weak defensively aswell.

    Will Emery fulfill ambitions in the long run? I’m not sure, but I still think he’ll be here on merit next season.

  40. Sue says:

    Thierry will be playing in Kompany’s testimonial, next Wednesday…. City legends v Premier league All Stars…. was all excited, until i came across RVP’s name!!!

  41. RC78 says:

    Hi Fred – we have similar cards than Oyster but you can also buy metro tickets (buy a pack) or day cards as well

  42. LB says:

    Un carnet………….ahhh, happy days.

  43. LB says:

    Emery’s job is to get us in the top four this season: it seems as though he is on his way and as such I will continue to support him until that possibility changes.

  44. Morning all

    Great discussion yesterday ………… has anyone got a snippet of an idea for something to chat about today?

  45. RA says:

    Morning Peaches, 😳

    The lads must be warn out with all the 1234, 789, tactical formations chat, and I can only think of VAR 😒 Referees 😞 Coaches 😒😏 etc, but we have not perhaps addressed Arsenal Women’s football, or racism in football throughout Europe.

    I do not have much time today, but I will try and write something cogent for future Posts — that threat of a Post from me may get the good writers creative juices working. 😜

  46. Rasp says:

    Morning all …

    .. a provocative (maybe) new post from GoonerB …

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